Installing Twine

There are two ways to use Twine: in a web browser or by installing it onto a computer. Most people prefer to use it in installed form, but the browser version exists for people in settings which make it difficult to install software, like a classroom.

This documentation calls the version of Twine you use directly in a browser "browser Twine" for short, and the version of Twine you install onto a computer "app Twine."

If you're using a tablet computer, the only way to use Twine is through a web browser. Twine doesn't have an Android or iOS application.

Twine might work, vaguely, on a phone or other device of that size, but it's designed to be used on a larger screen. Because you'll most likely do a lot of typing in Twine, a physical keyboard is ideal, but you probably can use an onscreen one in a pinch.

Using a Web Browser

Go to and follow the Use Online link to get started.

When you're using browser Twine, it will save your work to that browser and computer1. If you have multiple profiles in your browser, then your work is linked to that profile.

It's critical to understand that if you clear your browser's storage or delete your browser profile, you will lose all of your work in Twine. The exact way this is done varies by browser--for example, in Google Chrome, there is a Clear Browsing Data option in the Tools menu--but generally speaking, these features will say things like "clearing your browsing history" or "clearing web site data."

Keeping backups regularly is a must if you use browser Twine. See Archiving and Exporting Stories for how to do this.

Browser Twine can be installed as a progressive web application (PWA). For information on how to do this, please check your browser's documentation. Using Twine as a PWA means that it will be available even when you don't have an network connection, but you should still keep regular backups, as PWAs are still subject to having their data being erased when clearing browsing data.

iOS Browsers

If you want to use Twine on iOS, you must add it your Home Screen. If you don't do this, all of your work in Twine will be lost if a week ever passes without you using Twine.

This sounds like an urban myth or a ploy to get people to put Twine on their Home Screens, but it's unfortunately true. Apple places severe restrictions on how browsers work on iOS in the name of protecting users's privacy.

The policy it enforces that if a week passes where you do not visit a web site, Safari will erase all of its storage. This means that if you do not use Twine for a week, everything you create in it will be lost.

The one exception to this policy is if you add a web site to your Home Screen. Sites that are added as Home Screen shortcuts will not have their storage deleted.

It doesn't matter if you use Chrome, Firefox, or another browser app in iOS. The same restrictions apply because (as of this writing, anyway) Apple does not allow alternate browser engines on the iOS platform. Although these browsers might look or act differently than the built-in Safari app, underneath they still use Apple's Safari engine.

Safari on macOS

Do not use Twine in the Safari browser on macOS. The same problems noted in the iOS section above are true of Safari on macOS, except unfortunately there is no way to work around them.

Twine will show a warning about this if you do try to use it on Safari. This warning can't be hidden because the potential for losing all your work is so disastrous.

Installing On Your Computer

Go to and use the download option for your platform (Linux, macOS, or Windows).

  • On Linux, the downloaded archive will expand to a freestanding directory containing the Twine application. You can place this directory wherever you like. You might find it easier to install Twine using your distribution's package manager, if it has a package for Twine.
  • On macOS, the downloaded archive will expand to an application that should be copied to your Applications folder.
  • On Windows, the downloaded file is an installer application that will put Twine in your Program Files folder and add it to the Start Menu.

To be specific, the browser version of Twine uses your browser's local storage. This is detailed more in Viewing Local Storage Directly. Local storage is similar to browser cookies, which you might be more familiar with, but cookies are limited to 4 KB of storage, whereas local storage can hold megabytes of data (the exact number is dependent on the browser).